The confession of faith of the chosen people.
A reading from the Book of Deuteronomy (Deuteronomy 26:4-10)
Moses said to the people, “The priest shall take the basket [of first fruits] from your hand, and set it down before the altar of the Lord your God. And you shall make response before the Lord your God, ‘A wandering Aramean was my father; and he went down into Egypt and sojourned there, few in number; and there he became a nation, great, mighty, and populous. And the Egyptians treated us harshly, and afflicted us, and laid upon us hard bondage. Then we cried to the Lord the God of our fathers, and the Lord heard our voice, and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression; and the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with great terror, with signs and wonders; and he brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. And behold, now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground, which you, O Lord, have given me.’ And you shall set it down before the Lord your God, and worship before the Lord your God.”
The word of the Lord
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Ps 91:1-2.1 0-11.12-13.14-15 (R. cf. 15b)
R/. Be with me, O Lord, when I am in distress
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High,
and abides in the shade of the Almighty,
says to the Lord, “My refuge, my stronghold,
my God in whom I trust!” R/.
Upon you no evil shall fall,
no plague approach your tent.
For you has he commanded his angels
to keep you in all your ways. R/.
R/. Be with me, O Lord, when I am in distress.
They shall bear you upon their hands,
lest you strike your foot against a stone.
On the lion and the viper you will tread,
and trample the young lion and the serpent. R/.
Since he clings to me in love,
I will free him, protect him,
for he knows my name.
When he calls on me, I will answer him;
I will be with him in distress;
I will deliver him, and give him glory. R/.
The confession of faith of the believers in Christ.
A reading from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Romans (Romans 10:8-13)
Brethren: What does the Scripture say? The word is near you, on your lips and in your heart (that is, the word of faith which we preach); because, if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved. The Scripture says, “No one who believes in him will be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and bestows his riches upon all who call upon him. For, “every one who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.”
The word of the Lord
Gospel Acclamation: Matthew 4:4b
Glory and praise to you, O Christ. Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God. Glory and praise to you, O Christ
He was led by the Spirit in the wilderness and tempted by the devil.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (Luke 4: 1 -13)
At that time, Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan, and was led by the Spirit for forty days in the wilderness, tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing in those days; and when they were ended, he was hungry. The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone.”’ And the devil took him up, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, “To you I will give all this authority and their glory; for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it shall all be yours.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.”’ And he took him to Jerusalem, and set him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here; for it is written, ‘He will give his angels charge of you, to guard you,’ and ‘On their bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.”’ And Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.”’ And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time.
The Gospel of the Lord.
What do we live on? What is it that sustains our life today and instill in us the hope for a better future? The temptation narrative invites us to look at our life from God’s perspective and not that of the tempter. What does God want from me in my concrete life situation today? Certainly He does not want me to get hooked on miracles or to pay allegiance to demonic forces, or to demonstrate or be enticed by demonstrations of putative powers. If He had succumbed to the tempter, Jesus would have betrayed and abandoned His mission. So what do we live on? Jesus’ response is instructive. Our life is dependent on God whether or not we are in need. God does not allow us to be tempted beyond our strength. Let us learn to trust in Him – and in Him alone. He is enough for us.